Friday, March 12, 2010


So, while this is my 4-year-old daughter's name, it also has some pretty rich history in the Bible and through the Hebrews. The name is from the prophecy of the aged patriarch Jacob who on his deathbed pronounced blessings on each of his sons. "The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes" (Genesis 49:10). As you read the blessings you will also find scathing rebuke where there has been moral failure. Some instances of instability, lust, and cruelty forfeited the blessings of birthright. But you can also find special blessings reserved exclusively for the tribes of Judah and Joseph.

In the blessing pronounced on the descendants of Judah there is another piece of the mosaic of messianic prophecy. The specific tribe from which the Messiah would come is revealed. This blessing and prophecy gives us the name "Shiloh." Its root meaning is "to rest" or "to give rest." It is another Old Testament prophecy regarding the rest and peace which Jesus gives to all who follow Him.

There is a place in the state of Tennessee with this beautiful name, Shiloh. However, today it is known only as a place of bloodshed. Our history of the Civil War reveals to us that more than 25,000 men were killed on this battlefield. Those events are the opposite of the meaning of the word.

Jesus Christ is true to the meaning of all of the great titles given to Him. These are descriptions of His character and life mission. In this little-known title, He is the only One who can still bring rest to His people. Hear His promise once more, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28).

Our prayers are for Shiloh to live out her name, and provide rest, comfort, and encouragement to all her cross her path. You know, we actually selected her name because the meaning described to us was "God's gift; precious sacrifice." This, too, falls in line with God's promises and covenant in Jesus. May we all live and trust and hope in that gift of rest.

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